KABC's Legislative Priorities ~ 2019

Hanging in the Balance – Older Adult Health and Safety

Priority 1: Oversight – Nursing and Assisted Facility Survey/Inspections

  • Inspections delayed 5-12 months beyond 12 months defined in State and Federal law
  • KDADS inspection unit fully staffed at 60, 2018 and now understaffed by 18-22 inspectors
  • 2019-20 budget enhancement funds only one new surveyor position
  • 2019 budget supplemental brought wage parity for current surveyors, no new surveyors
  • KDADS not conducting on-site verification of facility corrections for deficiencies except at the highest level of harm/immediate jeopardy (IJ)

Impact on Elders: Suffer abuse/neglect longer. Harm is greater. Facility poor care continues.
Intervention Needed

  • New leadership at KDADS – Secretary, Commissioner of Survey, & Survey Director. Fill positions with conflict free, non-industry personnel
  • Funding for all vacant surveyor/inspector positions. Defined plan to fill and train surveyor positions.

Priority 2: Stop Misuse of Anti-Psychotic Drugs on Elders with Dementia

  • Not approved for dementia treatment. Increases risk of stroke, falls, infection and double the risk of death in 10 weeks with use
  • Kansas now ranks 42nd worst in U.S. for wrongful anti-psychotic drug use in nursing homes, up from the 38th worst of last quarter. KS ranking since 2011, 51st to 38th worst.

Impact on Elders: Death, suffering, impaired cognitive function.
Intervention Needed

  • Require written informed consent from person or legal representative
  • Public health campaign targeted to prescribers and public of dangers
  • Implement better dementia care practices – Dementia State Plan to be released in January

Priority 3: Fix 60-Day Provisional Employment in Background Check law-2427

  • Facility hires staff for 60 days – no cleared background check , no eyes-on supervision, no notice to residents, no financial liability should harm occur.

Impact on Elders: Real risk of abuse, neglect, theft. Unaware of danger. Unable to pursue financial restitution from facility for harm.
Intervention Needed

  • Eliminate Provisional Employment
  • Competent workforce in adequate numbers to meet long-term care needs in all settings.

Priority: KANCARE Fixes Needed – Timely eligibility determination. Access to care in all settings.

Priority: Attach defined quality improvement for older adults to provider reimbursement, e.g. “Bed Tax $”